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What are you doing this weekend? Feel free to share!

Keep in mind it’s OK to do nothing at all, too.

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    On Saturday I’m getting a delivery of plywood and dimensional lumber which I’ll try to use to build a pair of simple sawhorses. My newbie woodworking workshop right now is just a room with a few hand tools and a windowsill where I can sort of clamp small things but not really—so I need to bootstrap a working surface. I’ll also keep working on flattening the sole of my cheap bench plane with sandpaper.

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      Bootstrapping a shop is one of the hardest things to do in woodworking. It’s definitely satisfying when you get there though.

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        I’ve been doing some small random silly things to learn some tool use and get my feet wet, and so far I’m enjoying finding hacky ways to get by without the proper equipment (using two heavy tree stumps from the neighbor for a kind of vice, etc) but also of course it’s beautiful to actually have the appropriate thing (today I was happy to have a rasp, though I realized I don’t know how to get sawdust out of it).

        I’m making a cat scratching post for our newly adopted cat, with the base being a rather fresh slice of birch log and then a pine plank with sisal rope around it. I thought I would try my first mortise and tenon, but then I started to worry because the log isn’t cured dry… but I googled and realized that “green mortise, dry tenon” is actually an old way to make a really tight joint since the mortise will contract as it dries!

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          A great first shop-tool is a shave-brake or shave-horse, it’s easy enough to make w/o plans and some 2x material, and gives you some good workholding options for working with drawknife and spokeshave (which are utterly indispensable tools IMO). Those tools make it easy to make shop stools, tool handles, and other stuff, all with wood from a firewood pile. Workholding is about 60% of woodworking (the next 39% is jigs, which are really just more workholding tools). Anyway, it’s a really fun (if a bit pricey, sometimes) hobby for sure.

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            Interesting! That’s not a shop essential I’ve seen YouTubers mention, but it seems nice and I like the idea of shaping round things without a lathe.

            My mortise and tenon with the undried birch slice and the pine plank turned out quite fine—great feeling to have made an actual joint!

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              It isn’t a particularly popular thing, but I’ve found the ones I’ve built invaluable, even for non-round work. Paring tenons is really nice on the brake because you can get up close to the work from a reasonably comfortable sustained position. It also limits the amount of leverage you have on the work so you don’t overpare/gauge the work. Also natural to have a spokeshave handy for chamfering the corners of a tenon (which gives the glue some space to run, makes for a tighter joint overall).

              The other two that get a little more press (but not enough) are a couple of bench hooks and the related shooting board. The former are really simple devices – just a flat board with strip of wood at opposite ends on opposite sides, you butt one end on the edge of your workbench, and then can push your work into the other for doing hand cuts (useful especially for cutting tenons), or for planing small pieces. A shooting board is similar, but set up so you can also edge-plane boards dead square (or with judicious use of spacer blocks, at any angle you like) using a larger plane (I use a #7 Jointer I got off ebay and restored[1]). Benchhooks and shooting boards really provide a lot of extra precision at not a lot of added effort, and that’s what woodworking is all about.

              [1] Protip, it doesn’t take much to restore a plane, and they make good weekend projects. You can use them to fund the hobby, the #7 I got cost me 60$, rusted and with a badly checked blade. With about 3 days of work de-rusting and cleaning up the parts, I’ve got a very functional plane that’d probably run me 200$+; I’ve sold a few #4s at 3x what I paid for them. Paul Sellers – who is generally fantastic – has a video on the basic process. tl;dr 80 grit sandpaper, something flat (plate of glass works well), and elbow grease. A bench grinder isn’t necessary, but handy if the blade is real bad – just be careful not to detemper it.

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                Thanks for the info! I love Paul Sellers a lot—just today I watched one of his vlog episodes which was quite touching: https://youtu.be/mk8H-ffzULs?t=576

                On a whim I bought a cheap new bench plane with plastic handles and I’ve gotten started on servicing it by flattening the back, using sandpaper and a bathroom tile I glued to a plywood piece, my little base for flattening and sharpening. I don’t have any stones yet but tile and sandpaper are a nice start—I’m just learning about getting the burr, freehanding the bevel angle, stropping, and all that fun stuff—with a big thanks to Mr Sellers!

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      I’m going to continue helping my mother tear out her old crap firewood shelter around the back of the house that the previous owner left there. I was astonished how easy it was to pull apart, it was held together with very little. Last week we pulled it apart and moved all the proper firewood to the new shelter, and now we just need to clear out all the treated timber offcuts sitting in the floor and dump them, then extend the new wood shelter. The plan is to replace the old one with a nice veggie garden, because the spot probably has the best sun of anywhere in the garden but is very sheltered from the wind.

      It’s the first time in a long time I’ve done an outdoors/physical job and I expected to really hate it, but I’ve really enjoyed it. Doing something with your hands, even if it is pulling a corrugated iron roof off a crap wooden lean-to and nailing a few bits of wood together? It’s pretty fun. I’m definitely going to find some new projects to do after this one.

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        Beer, board games & metal music with friends. And maybe the lawn.

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          \m/

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          Writing a blog post on the “Learn 2 Code” bullshit that alt-righters have been pushing recently

          Edit:well, apparently I’m working on the italian version of lobste.rs

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            Do you have a synopsis for your thoughts on this? Its a fascinating thing that I know little about (other than what Joe Rogan has brought up on his show).

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              That it’s clearly a way to harass people and every programmer knows that you can’t just pick up programming to solve the problems in your life, especially if you’re under economical pressure and lack stability (like the people usually targeted by this sentence).

              Also I tried to argument on how this reinforce a narrative that is detrimental to programmers and so programmers should try to fight it.

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                Maybe I’m not familiar with the context of the saying, but there’s almost no economic activity right now that is as high-paying, low-effort, and high-demand as some form of programming–especially web stuff.

                What advice would be better to give to those people?

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                  The problem is that the average programmer has it way worse than top programmers and the mainstream media think. And if you learn late in your life there are good chances your skill will place you in positions way below the average. There are many other factors I consider in the article that explain why a random person cannot just learn to code and go to SV and earn money. It’s not how it works, except in some libertarian wet dream.

                  Better advice? The one I give them is to first understand all the cons of starting a programming career, then judge by themselves. My problem is not that people with economical difficulties start to code,, my problem is with people selling it as a solution for everybody, without context and without a honest explanation of the industry.

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                    I agree with your advice, but even the average programmer has leagues better employment opportunity right now and payment than someone in, say, the service sector. As a coworker of mine pointed out, we get to have soft hands.

                    Even getting paid a middle-of-the-road programmer salary (let’s say, 50-60K), is still 50% above the median salary for the US, not even factoring in that they’re doing better by leaving a stratum of low-paying, expendable jobs. Jobs that, incidentally, we all are trying to remove with software.

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                      I totally agree with this and I would still advice a lot of people to try if they can. The problem is that most people can’t because the amount of time and energy necessary is not feasible if you have to work two jobs already or worse. And then it should be an informed decision: again, the cons of becoming a programmer are hugely under-exposed to university students and that’s a problem. Presenting the option as a safe and healthy alternative is irresponsible. it comes at a price and the price should be clear upfront. Is it better than working at Walmart for the rest of your life? Probably it is for many, not for all. But what if you live far away from a tech hub, in a country where programmers earn not so good salaries? Is it worth to leave family and friends and try your luck in the big city? Again, for some it’s reasonable, for others it’s not. The trolls are taking away the chance to decide and that’s a problem. They create a sense of guilt because you have an easy option in front of you and you’re not taking it.

                      Anyway thanks, this discussion is helping me a lot with the article.

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                        So then the real problem is that they’re trapped in a situation where they can’t improve themselves because their economic situation is grinding them into the ground. Full stop, right? This isn’t about learning to code, it’s about having the leisure time necessary to grow and function as a healthy human being.

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                          Obviously it is about that, but that’s a premise that many advocates of the status quo would refuse. In the article this is central and I try to explain it sticking to the specific example because if this is true for basically any kind of specialized labour, it’s doubly true for programming.

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                            If it helps your thought process, another perspective on this:

                            A lot of folks view that there is certainly an element of personal choice in it, though. Computers have only come down in cost in the last few decades, the documentation and support networks have grown exponentially from what was around even ten years ago. It’s never been easier to get a website up or to start learning.

                            While there are a lot of people who are kept too ground down working several jobs and supporting families to learn a new trade, the folks being told to learn to code are nominally refugees from the Gawker-now-Gizmodo media empire. It’s kinda hard to accord them the same sympathy as, say, the cleaning lady or deliveryman or cop or whoever. They are, I’d wager, in fundamentally different situations and while it serves them to identify with that group they aren’t of it.

                            Further, given the amount that a lot of us have sacrificed to do programming, there is a natural lack of empathy for folks that don’t seem to be trying to learn (at the easiest time to do so, historically).

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                              Yeah, I think feoh has gotten to the root cause of what you were describing. I meet a lot of people like that. You can substitute programming for all sorts of things. They still can’t do them due to the effects of the grind they’re in.

                              Then, there’s others with less of a grind who can actually learn stuff on the side. Most of them don’t since it’s more fun to have fun in down time than learn a new skill. These could in fact learn easier forms of coding or IT to improve their circumstances. Then, repeat the process in new circumstances. They don’t, though. They’ll usually keep doing what’s comfortable to them enjoying their downtime.

                              I agree with your points that they should know the risks of the career. That they could get stuck in certain IT roles or laid off earlier are big ones. Laid off for outsourcing, in-sourcing, or ageism in particular. Those affect the most people.

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                      The context is a 4chan campaign to harass laid off journalists.

                      Hilariously, I’ve been on receiving end of it from some confused immature soul on Twitter.

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                        Honestly, I wouldn’t describe people who participate in harassment mobs as immature. They may be, but the fact that they repeat hateful messaging knowing it makes no sense isn’t primarily due to immaturity, it’s because it’s a highly effective strategy for achieving all manner of agendas in today’s world.

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                          I’d love an explanation for how telling people to ‘learn to code’ is hateful, and if it is why is it not hateful for the media to have been writing articles like ‘Are you an unemployed coal miner? Learn to code!’.

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                            I don’t recall expressing an opinion on that, as I’m not sufficiently informed about it. I was speaking in general.

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                          The context is a 4chan campaign to harass laid off “journalists” that spent years telling rural working class people that they should ‘just learn to code’.

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                            say hi to /pol/

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                              I don’t use it, but I have some friends that use it. Most of them claim to be using it ‘ironically’. I’m not sure I believe them.

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                        I hope you know that the “bullshit” you are referring to is satire. I mean it is bullshit of course, but the reason it is a recent trending meme has its roots:

                        It was originally used by journalists, who said laid off coal miners and other blue collar workers should just learn to code. When they were laid off as their opinion articles were not worth anymore for their employers they simply had the same stuff thrown at them by those who were victims of the bullshit earlier.

                        You can decide if this is harassment, and if throwing this crap on the poorer physical workers who lost their works was. I simply find it ironic when bullshit strikes back.

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                          Yes I know all the story but now it’s been used unironically against worker by trolls whenever they want to make fun of workers, often together with “free market delivers” and other similar memes

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                            Well, that is not nice. Harassment is never the solution. I have only heard reports of the initial slash-back against the Buzzfeed/Vice journalists, who in my opinion deserved some of it, though not continuous harassment, but a few days of reminder of the dark side of their previously published agenda.

                            I tend to avoid twitter, and only occasionally browse 4chan, where this “toxic” behavior is the standard onsite. This is why I have not noticed that this stuff is still going on…

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                              Yeah it spread to Facebook too

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                          well yeah, that ridiculous narrative comes from journalists which is why people are using it against them and why it’s funny

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                            you can’t just pick up programming to solve the problems in your life, especially if you’re under economical pressure and lack stability (like the people usually targeted by this sentence).

                            The people usually targeted by this sentences (by Buzzfeed journalists) were the ones targeting it back at those Buzzfeed journalists when they got laid off…

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                              I know, I addressed all the different sources of this narrative, including governmental initiatives

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                                If you know that why do you call it BS?

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                                  The whole narrative is BS, regardless of who is promoting it or why. I think there are many people pushing the same idea in good faith and that’s a problem in itself, but turning it in a weapon against workers makes it even more dangerous, in my opinion.

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                                    A thanks for clearing that out!

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                                    I for one am looking forward to the blog post!

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                                      I decided not to publish it. It’s too unstructured and I felt like talking about too many subjects and to too many audiences. After a couple of reviews I decided to kill it for now.

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                                        Fair enough. I hope you find the time and energy to revisit it later.

                                        Thanks for promoting some interesting discussions.

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                            You know that that’s just a joke, right?

                            Buzzfeed fired a whole lot of their journalists, many of whom had written lots about how coal miners and other rural Americans should just ‘learn to code’ and stop complaining about their livelihoods being destroyed by the necessary changes that need to be made to how we use resources due to climate change with no support provided at all. Telling them that they should stop complaining about losing their jobs as journalists and should just ‘learn to code’ is not ‘bullshit’ and nobody is seriously pushing it or suggesting that they should. The point is to make them realise how it feels to be told to give up your career path and ‘just learn to code lol’.

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                              I would say that perhaps focusing on making other people feel bad is not a nice thing to be doing, regardless of how ironic it might be.

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                                It’s not ‘ironic’. They weren’t ironically making people feel bad. They were intentionally making very nasty, vindictive and arrogant people feel bad by showing them how they made other people feel.

                                If you need to make someone feel bad to make them realise how they’re making others feel, then maybe it’s not nice, but neither is their behaviour that necessitated it.

                                Like it or loathe it, if you can’t understand the motivation behind the ‘learn to code’ meme then you lack empathy.

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                                  You misunderstand: petty revenge at journalists is not nice, regardless of what they may have said to others. The ones that Irene is referring to as using irony are the 4channers, not the journalists.

                                  Revenge is never justified. Eye-for-an-eye, even if it’s just verbal, is the most disgusting form of justice, designed to appeal to my and your basest desires.

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                                    I didn’t say it was about revenge. Please make sure to carefully read comments before responding to them in a condescending way.

                                    The point is not revenge, it is to make people understand how they have made others feel.

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                                      It’s possible to convey that without being petty, “how does that feel, huh, you like that punks, you got fired, huh, how does it feel, learn to code, losers!”

                                      It’s mean and mean-spirited. It does not help. It’s petty verbal revenge.

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                                        If they’d just said that nobody would have listened to them and we wouldn’t be discussing the issue right now. Saying it doesn’t help is just wrong.

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                              I’ve been having arguments with my wife about this. Did not know the whole thing about alt-righters pushing this. I’ve seen in pushed in mainstream outlets. Can you share some links with examples of alt-righters? I’m generally curious, because like I said I’ve seen it pushed in other places as well.

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                                This is when it took traction: https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/learn-to-code

                                Now it’s used to troll on a regular basis.

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                                  I continue to be amazed by the hard work done by knowyourmeme.com and I’ve twice now found it a great resource to learn the basic timeline of different internet phenomena - first the origins of the “PC Master Race” meme, now this.

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                              After this week foray into climbing I’m going back to the climbing gym on Saturday. I’m really loving it. The idea is to go 3-4 times a week from now on.

                              I’m also working on some tooling to help me manage my OpenBSD server and keep it secure. Scanning logs to find intruding attempts, etc. I also now get login successes from unknown addresses and important notifications through Telegram, which has a lot more visibility to me than my email account (as I don’t want to have my e-mail account in my phone for security reasons).

                              I may post the tools here in some weeks when they have matured and proved useful.

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                                Berlin made International Women’s Day a public holiday, so I’ll probably celebrate by reading some Margaret Atwood. Other than that I have a side project in Rust that I’d like to complete. It’s nice to get back into “stack and heap” languages after writing Python for years.

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                                  I suggest watching Angel Number 9 by Roberta Findlay instead. It’s fucking wild.

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                                  Recovering from the week. Fuck working

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                                    Producing a podcast with an indie-turned-pro wrestler from my city. Spending time with the lady. Easy peasy weekend.

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                                      Taking another attempt at learning Rust

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                                        It does takes time to feel comfortable in rust. But honestly once I got a handle on it I completely fell in love with writing it and as a weird byproduct it sort of built up my confidence in my ability to write code and made me better in other languages oddly. I still love python, C and C++ but getting a non-trivial app to compile and run in rust just feels really good…

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                                        I have had a hard time trying to figure out some project for a number of spare old boards.

                                        I’m spending this weekend completing a BeagleboardXM-based project. While quite old, the XM can sustain dump1090 ADS-B via RTL-SDR dongle plus occasional USB webcam streaming. I added in a serial port weather meter because it requires very little CPU time, and still have one free USB port (to be decided before sealing the waterproof plastic electrical box). I will install the box on the roof, where I already have a PoE cable ready.

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                                          Probably actually working on $dayjob stuff, but thankfully that is totally of my own volition.

                                          After 4 years of thinking about something that I wanted to build and a year and a half of working at a company where it made sense to build it, I’ve got the execs convinced that what I want to build is the right thing for the company. So now I just need to deliver it.

                                          We’re now to the point where parts actually look like they’re working which is getting me excited to work on it more and it’s nearly to the point where enough of the base level stuff is done that I can start getting more people working on it in parallel.

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                                            • Installing a set of 3 new pendant lights in the dining room (which will mean running new wiring, new switches in a completely different place, and mounting them to the concrete ‘ceiling’
                                            • Installing a couple of window awnings over my office window so it doesn’t become a blast furnace if I open the blinds after 10am.
                                            • If I get time, running some ethernet in my office (and if I really get time, out to the lounge room), because wifi in a concrete building sucks donkey balls, and I’m finally sick enough of the issues to do the work to fix it.
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                                              We had to go to the hospital for my youngest boy because of suspected pneumonia today. They where right so probably the weekend will be filled with taking care of him.

                                              I found a place to colo my nuc last weekend, I’ve been preparing it for a couple of days but quit when the little one got worse and demanded my attention. I hope to finish it this weekend so I can mail it on Monday.

                                              That’s it, maybe play some games on my old PS3.

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                                                I feel you on the pneumonia front. We just got out of hospital a few weeks ago with my 4 year old daughter for the same…

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                                                Trying to figure out the equations behind the hyperbolic space that constitutes the Dasher input method. Thought it’d be quick to spin together a demonstration in nim for an online js/HTML version but it’s a bit more advanced than I thought.

                                                After digging some in the source code and finding the correct formula I tried to vectorize some drawings of a friend. Then my drifted and now it’s X-files marathon until I go to sleep.

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                                                  I’m off to Hamburg with some friends to attend the concert with Florence + The Machine tomorrow evening.

                                                  So we’ll do a whole lotta nothing and something, I assume.

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                                                    This was a particularly disappointing work week.
                                                    I will spend this weekend raising my HackerRank score.

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                                                      My lab just got its first new computer in probably 10 years, so naturally the first thing I’m going to do is see if I can get our Windows applications running under Wine. I also have a selfish personal reason for doing this. This computer is significantly faster than any computer I own, and I it would be nice if I could SSH into it to do some tinkering on a fast computer :)

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                                                        Well, I treated myself to a 4-day weekend by taking Friday and Monday off as vacation days (“Use ’em or lose ’em!”). Spent most of yesterday relaxing and fending off the tail end of this flu. Played Doom 2016 in the morning, hit the gym, played classic Doom upon my return, and then recorded and uploaded an episode for Hacker Public Radio.

                                                        I’ll be going out later tonight for dinner by the bay (supposed to be a nice night). Spent the morning interacting with family during breakfast and then hit the gym.

                                                        As for the next few days, I plan to hit the beach on Monday for some ocean air and relaxation since everyone else will be working. After that, heading home to pick up my sons and then celebrate my niece’s birthday altogether with a dinner out.

                                                        Still not sure about Sunday. More than likely, more relaxing. After a rough two weeks, I need the lazy days. 😁

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                                                          Improving https://badges.debian.net/ , uploading https://github.com/babluboy/bookworm into Debian Experimental, fixing the Python MongoDB library in Debian

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                                                            Wife’s out having a weekend with friends so just finished taking little son and daughter out for Italian and then a late night in a tent in our living room watching finding nemo and eating popcorn, which they are passed out asleep in now. Tomorrow going to take them to the local park, play video games, and generally avoid writing any code at all as well as catch up on some reading. Finishing a sand county almanac by Also Leopold and starting wind sand and stars by Antoine de saint-exupery. Was going to start Castile by him but the book turned up in French and I can only read a little French… need to remember to check amazon book details more carefully…

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                                                              Attending (not sure yet if participating) this year’s Stupid Shit No One Needs & Other Terrible Ideas Hackathon.

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                                                                Trying out rocket.rs by writing a link sharing site that mixes the best of Lobsters and Discourse.

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                                                                  I tried using rocket but just didn’t like it. I was coming over from twisted and tornado in python though so I felt more at home with actix-web which is a bit more stripped down than rocket.

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                                                                  • Working on slides about KARL for the next BSD PL meetup
                                                                  • Potentially working on slides about tsearch in Postgresql
                                                                  • Gaming
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                                                                    Hacking on my libre server. I was able to replace the KGPE motherboard’s proprietary BIOS with Coreboot, but Coreboot doesn’t do fan control. Now the fans spin at 100% speed and make a racket.

                                                                    Raptor Engineering is working on porting OpenBMC to the KGPE’s board controller, which should be able to tell the fans to slow their roll. It looks like the next step is soldering a JTAG header onto the motherboard.

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                                                                      I’ve been learning Arabic for the past 8 months or so, and I’m finally at the point where I can start transcribing songs and translating them!

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                                                                        Cool do you have any useful tips that you might share

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                                                                        Smoking weed and reading The Gulf War Did Not Take Place.

                                                                        Otherwise, trying to learn to read Japanese and giving my blog some love. I also really need to write some Assembly. Gah – been saying I’d try it out for months now.

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                                                                          Writing a blog post/article about proper backup design and management.

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                                                                            Hoping to untanlge my Home Assistant install, which somehow degraded into a crashing mess.

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                                                                              I’d been using the Mercury Parser API for my personal bookmarking site, and it’s being shut down in a little over a month, but has been open-sourced, and I need to figure out the best way to run it myself.

                                                                              Edit: I could also investigate alternatives for extracting structured content from websites, but I probably won’t.

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                                                                                My SPrint ends in a code freeze in one hour, and things are not ready, so I think there will be some weekend work happening over the VPN this weekend.

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                                                                                  Trying to wrap my head around how to draw curved lines using PICO-8 which I’ve been having an immense amount of fun with.

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                                                                                    I’m going to try to go on a hike. It may rain, but if it’s not heavy, I’ll go anyways. Other than that, I’m going to catch up with my Dad, take care of some errands, paperwork, and do my writing class homework.

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                                                                                        Will have to work on Saturday but I plan to use my Sunday to retake my writing and write some blog posts for next week.